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(Dec. 8, 2008Carbondale, Colo.) The mission of the HERA Women’s Cancer Foundation is two-fold: to fund scientific and community grant programs and to raise awareness of ovarian cancer symptoms. To meet the latter goal, the non-profit launched the Partners in Awareness program with two outdoor industry leaders joining as partners: Sterling Ropes and Mountain Gear. The program, an offshoot of HERA’s Partners in Action Program that was established in 2006, enables partners such as Sterling Rope to include ovarian cancer awareness hangtags featuring symptoms of the disease on all dynamic ropes distributed in the United States. Beginning in January 2009, Mountain Gear will include ovarian cancer awareness postcards in customer orders. Mountain Gear’s website and catalog will include a HERA Partners in Action logo to let consumers know that the product provides a “give-back,” or donation, to the HERA Foundation. The inaugural partner in the program, Stonewear Designs, a Boulder, Colo-based clothing company specific to women’s all encompassing active lifestyles, currently places awareness hangtags featuring ovarian cancer symptoms on their entire spring collection. Though it was widely believed that ovarian cancer does not have symptoms, in 2007 the American Cancer Society, Society of Gynecological Oncologists and the American Society of Clinical Oncologists released a consensus statement confirming that it does and suggests that doctors and women be informed of these symptoms. Seventy-five percent of ovarian cancer cases are diagnosed at an advanced stage after the cancer has spread beyond the ovary, and the chance of five-year survival drops to less than 25 percent. “Enjoying the outdoors is essential for our consumer base. As one of the largest suppliers of outdoor gear, Mountain Gear reaches thousands people in a variety of demographics,” says Paul Fish, president of Mountain Gear. “To deliver an important health message on HERA’s behalf is another way in which we can help to improve the quality of life for our customers. “As an industry leader in rope manufacturing, Sterling Rope understands the importance of persistence and innovation. We are proud to help educate women by getting this crucial information out to the public through the hangtag program,” says Carolyn Brodsky, president of Sterling Rope. “We recognized the courageousness of HERA founder Sean Patrick in her own struggle with cancer and the consistent effort that the foundation has put fourth in creating programs that help in the fight against ovarian cancer.” “The current economic climate is especially tough on non-profits. Yet it’s critical that HERA continue to provide education and awareness about ovarian cancer, a disease that is the fourth leading cause of cancer deaths among women in the United States,” explains Stephanie Forte, a founding HERA board member whose agency currently oversees both Partner programs for HERA. “Significant strides were made in addressing breast cancer when it became a topic if discussion in the general public. Partners like Sterling and Mountain Gear are enabling HERA to make the same type of inroads with ovarian cancer.” About HERA Partners in Action & Awareness ProgramsThe HERA Partners in Action program enables companies to “give back” a portion of sales from a product or group of products to the HERA Women’s Cancer Foundation. Designated Partners in Action products also include hangtags that educate consumers about ovarian cancer facts and symptoms. This program includes companies such as: Women’s Adventure Magazine, BlueWater, Petzl, MadRock, Bronwen, Evolv, FoxRiver, Omega Pacific, Seattle Manufacturing Corporation, Friksn and Zensah. The HERA Partners in Awareness program is designed to allow companies to help HERA educate consumers about ovarian cancer facts and symptoms by placing special hangtags created by HERA on their collection or designated products. For more information contact Forte Creative Media, 702.898.2547. About the HERA FoundationThe HERA Foundation (Health, Empowerment, Research, Awareness) is a registered 501 (c)3, whose mission is to stop the loss of mothers, daughters, wives, sisters, partners and girlfriends from ovarian cancer by empowering women to take control of their health, empowering the medical community to find new directions in ovarian cancer research and empowering communities to provide support For more information, visit www.herafoundation.org. To schedule an interview with HERA Foundation founder Sean Patrick please contact Forte Creative Media, 702.898.2547.